Earl Sweatshirt – Doris

By KRUA Music Manager Oli P

Earl Sweatshirt - DorisWith beats so glacially slow and fuzzy subs low and dense enough to make listeners feel it in their stomachs, Earl Sweatshirt’s new album Doris is here. A long time in the making, Doris will lays out some incredibly fat lyrics from an incredibly skinny lyricist. While the “fat” lyrics of Earl’s early work fell into that Paula Dean-style of stomach contorting butter-on-crisco-on-fried-something-or-other category, the leaks off of Doris, most notably “Chum,” “Burgundy” and “Whoa,” are grouped into the ph- variety of fat: personal, heavy, clever, and original. Doris’s release is poignant when stacked against current events in hip-hop, such as the infamous Kendrick Lamar “Control” verse in which he directly strikes out a slew of rapper like items on a grocery list, proclaiming that he is the best, rather than just making music that numbly asserts as much.

However, Earl’s approach is different. Listeners who are expecting more bloody, gory lyrical perversion will be disappointed. It’s because Earl himself is disappointed. Disappointed in what has become of his life, in what rap fame has done to him, and how he wants to quit rather than acquiesce to the pressure of listeners’ expectations. The album marks a change in a rap anomaly, illustrating the power that hip-hop has to tell it like it is, rather than just pretending.

Bottom line: Doris will give it to you straight, perhaps straighter than has happened in hip-hop in a long, long time. 3.4/5

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